The Pennsylvania Infrastructure Investment Authority (PENNVEST) awarded a $1.7 million grant to the New Kensington water authority to replace lead lines in the city and Arnold.
According to Pennsylvania State Rep. Carrie Lewis DelRosso in a press release, the award is among $117 million in funding for water projects announced by Gov. Tom Wolf.
The grant for the Municipal Authority of the City of New Kensington will replace 326 lead service lines, aiming to reduce leaks in the system and reduce lead-contaminated water that impacts residents. The service lines are also deteriorated and filled with calcification.
According to the press release, the residences located on the streets along the service lines have experienced numerous service link leaks.
“As the City of New Kensington continues to revitalize, this grant will assist with infrastructure for a great up and coming area, drawing more new businesses and attracting more residents. The funding supports the new improvements already ongoing in the area, which will assist with New Kensington and Arnold’s continued sustainable growth,” stated Lewis DelRosso in the press release.
Many projects replace lead lines that can impact drinking water quality, reported the press release.
“The grant will help keep our overall costs down, and the most important thing is it will get the lead out of our system,” said James Matta, authority manager, reported The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.
The authority analyzed the water system and discovered that the majority of lead lines were in New Kensington and Arnold, which have older homes. Many of the service lines in these areas were installed in the early 1900s and the lead lines were no longer used for residential customers starting in the 1930s.
According to Matta, the authority has never exceeded the federal drinking water limit for lead set at 15 parts per billion (ppb), reported The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.
Property owners will be notified of the waterline replacement project by the authority once a timeline has been established for the project.
According to the press release, younger municipalities served by the authority do not have lead lines.